Sep 222009
 

It’s really nice to know that people want to know how to begin a letter. First, it’s nice to know that in this world of telephones, there is a real interest in writing!  It’s also great to know that our readers want to be polite, socially acceptable, and grammatically correct!

Here’s a request I received from a reader recently:

Please tell me about some phrase begging of the letter Like ( I hope find you in the best of health or I hope find well ect…

My question back is – to whom would you be writing? To a friend?  To a business associate?  To a relative or parent?  This will help me come up with some beginnings based on the social relationship.  There are more formal and less formal ways to ask this question.

Let’s look at the two openings you suggested:

I hope this letter finds you well” is a very polite opening, and one that indicates good manners.  It also would be sent to somebody whom you already know.  Your variant would be “I hope this letter finds you in the best of health.”  Of course, as I indicated, this is a polite opening, and written to somebody whom you already know, so you want to use it appropriately.  You also want to use this with someone who will appreciate the fine language.

If you want to write a letter to somebody you do not know, let me know and we can broaden the conversation and come up with some other appropriate openings.

Thank you for your question; it is a very good one!

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  One Response to “How to Begin a Letter”

  1. Another way, very generic and possible for people we know well or those we don’t, is, “Greetings from _____.” The blank can be a place (Greetings from New York) or a personal group (Greetings from us Smiths, or from the Smith family). You can write, Greetings from school! or you can just write Greetings!

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